Local lifeboat crews have been left baffled after a fishing boat at the centre of an apparent distress call was found at Avoch Harbour.
Aberdeen Coastguard received a breach call on Channel 16 at 9.49am, indicating a broken down fishing boat in the area near Chanonry Point.
RNLI Invergordon Lifeboat launched to aid the vessels before being joined by Inverness Coastguard, AC2, Cromarty coastguard and Nairn coastguard; however following no boat could be found.
Following an extensive search, RNLI volunteers found the boat tied up at Avoch Harbour, where the fisherman said he had not been out to sea on that day.
Invergordon Lifeboat crews returned to the base around 12.30pm.
Officials are putting the callout down as a hoax call.